Realtek 8xxx based PCI-e NIC not recognized in pFsense 1.2.3

  • Hi All,
    I'm a newbie here and looking thru the hardware compatibility list and seem that most Realtek 8xxx based NIC should by default be supported.

    I'm putting together a pfsense firewall box for a small office and put together a system based on MSI H55M-E33 motherboard with Intel i3 540 CPU and 4GB of ram.
    The pfsense install recognized the on-board Realtek PCI-E NIC card and I can set an IP address on it an able to ping out.

    But when I try to assign my two additional Realtek based PCI-E NIC cards on plugged onto my two available PCI-E 1x slots, it's not taking it and so I'm unable to assign any IPs to them.

    The NIC assignment did successfully pickup all three NIC MAC address thou, but it's not able to pick up any NIC in link up status (including the NIC I can successfully assign IP). But then I'm still able to assign the on-board Realtek NIC, but just not the two additional PCI-E Realteck NICs I plugged in.

    Am I missing something here? Any pointer or hints much appreciated.


  • Do you know what exact chipset is used on the add on NIC?  You can remove one piece and look at the chip itself.

    Odds are, it's using one of the newer revisions (8111E) or something less common than the typical 8111(B/C/D).  Could be a 8168 where the drivers aren't in 1.2.3 (Freebsd 7.2R).

  • I think it could be one of the Realtek 8111X varient, i'll have to open the box to check tomorrow.

    I see this thread have got 8111E working on his box,32862.0.html

    So I suggess I'll give the compiled driver from that thread link a try and see if it helps. The guy mention that he uploaded the compiles driver thru Web UI, and I'm not sure where exactly that can be done via Web UI.

  • It's under the Diagnostics tab -> Command Prompt.

    Select the file to upload.  It will be uploaded to the /tmp directory.  You will need to move it to the correct location from there.

    For this module, you need to execute the following commands either from the GUI or in a SSH Shell:

    mv /tmp/if_rl.ko /boot/kernel
    echo if_rl_load="YES" >> /boot/loader.conf

    Reboot when done.

  • Thanks for the help, I'll give this a try today and see if it all works out.

  • I just checked my NIC card today and it it use Realtek 8168D chipset and it's actually accepted by default. I just didn't go thru the NIC assignment thinking that the auto detect can't detect an UP link.
    Now it worked just fine without any problem.

    By the way the driver mention in the above thread seem to case the kernel to get fatal exception on bootup and the kernel seems to crash and reboot in cycle.

    Thanks all.

  • Hey xeon

    Ihave the same issue i got  1 realtek builtin NIC on the board and a d-link 4port nic  when im supposed to asign interfaces i only see the 4 ports on the d-link card it wont show the realtek nic but like i said it detects it in the startup as re0

    i figured i would have the uplink onthe realtek card and 4 diffrent subnets 192.168.1-4  on the d-link quad card

    did your realtek just magicly appeard ?you dident do anything at all to make it find it in asign ?


  • Quite possibly the re driver recognised your onboard LAN but then there was something about the NIC that the driver didn't like.

    Please post the output o the pfSense shell command dmesg which will likely provide some further information.

  • iwill tomorrow thanks

  • I was thinking that the command line did not auto detect the nic as up in command line setup portion.
    but once in GUI mode I was able to assign ip with out issue.

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